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Hayden Cross
Hayden Cross went three-for-five at the plate with an RBI.
photo courtesy of Appalachian State Athletics

Appalachian State Baseball Posts Road Win at UNC-Asheville

App State scored two runs in the top of the first inning and was able to add on valuable insurance runs late to defeat UNC Asheville, 7-3, at Greenwood Field, Tuesday.

The Mountaineers (16-11, 6-3) wasted no time getting on the board. Xavier Moronta led off the top of the first with a bunt single, and Austin St. Laurent reached on an error to put two men aboard. Hayden Cross then came through with a single to right to score Moronta, and later in the inning, CJ Boyd lifted a sac fly to score St. Laurent and make it 2-0.

UNC Asheville responded quickly, cutting the lead in half with a sac fly of their own in the second, and then went in front with a two-run home run one inning later.

App State answered in the very next frame. Boyd led off with a triple to the wall in right, and came into score on a Dylan Rogers RBI single to tie the score. Later in the inning, Rogers came around to score on a passed ball to put the Mountaineers in front again, 4-3.

After Trey Tujetsch started the ballgame, Grey LaSpaluto (win, 1-1) entered the contest in the third, tossing 2.2 scoreless innings, giving up just two hits, while striking out two, earning his first win of the season.

The rest of the Mountaineers bullpen followed suit. Zach Lewis fired a scoreless sixth inning, striking out the side. Ryan Sleeper tossed 0.2 of an inning without allowing a run, and Collin Welch followed with 1.1 scoreless innings, collecting two more strikeouts. Skylar Brooks sealed the win with a scoreless ninth inning, picking up two strikeouts.

Meanwhile the offense continued to build on the advantage. In the sixth, Jonathan Xuereb was hit by a pitch to lead off the inning, before being lifted for pinch runner Caleb Cross. The right-handed pitcher came all the way around to score on a wild pitch, followed by an RBI single from Andrew Terrell to make it 5-3.

Boyd scored another run on a wild pitch in the seventh inning, and then in the eighth, St. Laurent led off with an opposite-field double, before coming into score on a Golston Gillespie RBI single to make it 7-3.

The App State bullpen combined to work 6.2 scoreless innings, and combined for 11 strikeouts. Hayden Cross led the offense with a three-hit game, while Boyd and Terrell each had two hits on the night.

The Mountaineers return home for a three-game series against ULM beginning on Thursday night at 6 p.m. The game will be broadcast on ESPN+.